What Fear Taught Me About Writing


Fear & Anticipation

Fear & Anticipation (Photo credit: hartlandmartin)

“The only real failure in life is not to be true to the best one knows.” -Buddha

Fear and failure

When I came up with idea for this series of posts, I was most looking forward to fear. Fear is something that can change us.

With fear it adds another layer to who we are, as well as something more. Fear of failure is one of the most common concepts everyone can relate to. We think about it as writers often. When we see someone published that is in the same genre, and may have the same story as ours, we think, “Maybe I’m doing something wrong. I need to do something different.” Everyone is different, none of us are the same. The idea that someone has done the same book as ours is something that just doesn’t happen. There are similarities, but it’s never the same story.

Fear and my Novel Writing

When I wrote my first novel it was a vampire story, one that is still part of who I am as a writer. I love the characters, the story and still have a fondness for it because it was the first book I wrote. The fear I was for its content. It’s about vampires, and those of us who write know there are many vampire novels, still, with vampire stories. My first book may never be published, but I wrote it and it’s done, so I have that.

My newest novel is Y/A-Science Fiction. It’s more along the lines of John Carter of Mars, with a female protagonist . This story came to me when I was trying to write a ghost story, but evolved into something else. I’d never read John Carter before I wrote it, but there are similarities.

The fear this book caused me when John Carter came out, and bombed, was something that kept me up at night. I was still writing it, but I saw the similarities. I love many things about this story, the main character is amazing, the setting is wondrous and the fear I had initially when John Carter came out has subsided.

Using fear as an advantage

This year is where my fear is more focused at what finishing what I started. The fear of sending a book off to an agent, and I do have one interested, is the greatest fear I have for the next year, but I know I’ll get over that. After that, and the possible acceptance of the MS, the fear will come back as it’s sent to publishers and after that readers.

The fear we have as writers, whether blogging and looking for readers or as novelists and getting our books out to the masses, is one which is unique to writers.

Our fear of acceptance to the agent, publisher and reader may stop us from writing, but we must write. If we don’t write we’re lying to ourselves about who we are.

I’m a writer and I write novels and short stories.

How have you dealt with fear in your writing? Answer in the comments.

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About Brian B Baker

I'm Brian B Baker. I often write confusing things, but they're the things that come out of my head at the time. I write two blogs regularly, http://thebleedinginkwell.com/ and http://interspacedmind.wordpress.com/. Both of them have different purposes. I live in Las Vegas where I listen to conversations daily from travelers and those who walk up to the bar I call my day job. I'm a writer, Buddhist and sometime photographer. I love the written word so much I'm trying to get published, but don't tell anyone, they don't understand. I hope you enjoy my posts on either blog, most of all I hope you find something to help get through your day, and if you like it, please share. Enjoy, Bri
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4 Responses to What Fear Taught Me About Writing

  1. Fear is a way for chemicals in the body to kick into high gear – motivating…but you can choose which way to go. It’s not always a negative as it can sharpen instincts and get things moving. Hard to manage, but it can be ridden.
    All the best in this year’s travels and battles!
    (Oh, the background while quite nice – but it does make it a bit hard to focus and read the white letters)

  2. Pingback: How to get your story line back on track « Write on the World

  3. Pingback: Author Notes; The Journey Toward My First Novel | Kellie Elmore

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